How Busy Will The Cruise Be


This will be our first ever cruise and we have chosen the Princess Grand sailing from San Francisco in Sept. Is there anyway to find out if the ship will sail at full capacity nearer the time. I'd like an idea of how busy cruises are when fully booked. Do you have to book table and shows in advance or when on board. Sorry I have no idea what to expect apart from watching some YouTube videos

Many Thanks

Tags: Princess Cruises

9 Answers

There isn't really any way to know how busy/full a ship will be until you board - the cruise lines don't share that information. I'm not sure exactly which week your cruise is, but if it's during labor day/before school starts it will probably be busier and have more kids. Otherwise, there's not really any way to know.

You can find out by making a fake booking (go through the booking procedure online to the point of choosing your room, then backing out). You should be able to see how many cabins are available. If they are only taking guarantee bookings, then its a pretty good chance they are full.

After your original booking, you can let them know what size table you want (in the cruise personalizer section), but you cannot reserve a specific table. (you may be able to arrange something with the maître d' once on board).

Likewise you cannot make (nor do you need to make) reservations for the shows.

Cruise lines always plan to fill the cruise which is why you may find last minute discounted pricing. They are willing to board people at break even pricing because the goal is to make money once you are on board. So it is not very often that ships sail below capacity but for the few times they do I don't think it would be that noticeable.

Ships typically sail full (or just about nearly so) and often at 103%+ occupancy (due to 3rd and 4th beds in some cabins).

Specialty resteraunts need to be booked, shows are first in get the seats, not uncommon for seats to be all taken over an hour before the show starts

Welcome to the forum. I’ve read that ships sail at capacity almost all of the time, but they are so big that they’ve never felt crowded to me. Specialty restaurants require a reservation, and some cruiselines have reservations for the shows. Please be sure to read your cruise FAQs to learn all about those details on the ship you will be on.

Not all shows. On some of the bigger ships depending on the cruise line shows are done via reservation and those can be booked in advance and sometimes go quickly.

I don't think Princess accepts reservations for shows.

I believe they are a must on RCCL


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